As to be expected, when two different cultures come together in a blissful partnership made with love, there are some funny situations that arise.
Here are 9 things you’ll relate to when you’re an Ausländer dating, or are married to, a local in Vienna.
1. You get naked in public and it’s not weird anymore
At some point in your relationship, you and your S.O. will be naked together and surrounded by strangers. No, this is not the beginning of a porn video, but rather a very normal spa afternoon at the Therme where everyone behaves natural while you hold back a laugh at your own teenager-style jokes your coming up with in your head. At the same time, you struggle to think away the awkwardness of the moment and hope not to bump into anyone you know. Before you know it though, you become one of them, and you are sun bathing naked on the Donauinsel in summer, completely butt naked. Ok, maybe we’re exaggerating, but getting naked in front of complete strangers will become a lot less weird.
2. You meet the parents early on in the relationship, but it’s not a big deal
In some cultures, meeting the parents of your new boyfriend/girlfriend is considered “a step” so big, it deserves its own Rom-Com (aka Meet the Parents). However, in Austria, meeting the parents will probably happen at random, without notice, and certainly without anyone (but you) thinking it’s a big deal.
On a Sunday at a Gasthaus, an unplanned visit, an informal lunch in town…Austrian parents are often around and they meet whoever their kids hang out with, without any ceremony. They might not even remember your name at first, and that’s no big deal.
3. You have your own blanket in bed
When you’re confronted with the trend here that couples sleep together, but with their own individual blankets – it’s weird at first. What is this? Summer camp? What’s next, separate beds? Austrians often do separate blankets, and to be honest, after a while you’ll realise it’s actually quite nice. We mean sure, cuddles and kisses under the sheets are great, but don’t we all just want a good night sleep at the end of it all, without the awkward pulling of that one single duvet each time one gets uncovered?
4. They always come on time aka. punctuality is important
You might not have been a very punctual character before meeting your Austrian lover, but this might have changed since meeting them. Because when you really like someone, why let them wait, right?
If your Austrian date says they’ll be at your house at 6pm, expect them to be there right at 6pm. Yes, they’ll actually be there at the time they’ve stipulated, so you better be ready unless you want them to turn up when you’re still in your underwear. Ah wait…maybe that’s not such a bad plan.
5. Your German, ahem..we mean your Austrian will improve. Until then, you just laugh when everybody else does in a conversation
Austrians speak really good English, but eventually in the conversation, the group of friends your babe hangs out with will switch to German (meaning some thick Austrian dialect), and you’ll have to keep up.
In the early days, you’ll just laugh along with everybody when they do, secretly hoping you’re not the subject of the joke. Then, slowly you’ll start dropping Viennese slang words like you own them! HEAST OIDA! It will be like your party trick that will make your Austrian Schatz proud and their mates laugh and love you.
Oh, and you know those 3 years of German you had in high school? They will be wiped out along with anything Hochdeutsch and replaced with some genuine, quality Austrian that will soon sound like music to your ears.
6. You have your own Hausschuhe aka. slippers now
You never owned a pair of house shoes and life was ok that way. Then you started dating an Austrian and in the colder months you would find yourself more often than not borrowing his/her comfy slippers and slowly claiming them for yourself. Then St Nikolaus came and got you your very own pair. Sound familiar? Welcome to the the land of Gemütlichkeit.
7. You find yourself doing a lot of outdoor-sy stuff all of a sudden
When dating an Austrian, your chilled Sunday morning turns into a 3-hour hike followed by a mountain bike downhill ride, followed by rock climbing, followed by slack-lining in the park.
You will discover that your body possesses whole new limits and that your trendy sneakers are nowhere near good enough to keep up with a trip into nature with your sporty, nature-loving Austrian partner. Soon you will own good quality gear for sports you never imagined yourself doing. Stay strong – there’s always beer and wine at the end of this journey in Austria.
8. You find yourself talking a lot about how great the social welfare system is in Austria compared to back home
No matter where you’re from, how good of a social system your country has, chances are that the Austrians have it better. It’s not surprising if a typical date night includes a conversation about the housing system, or the health care system popping up in it.
9. You’ll stop defending the bakeries in your own country
You’ve got no chance. the Austrians and the German bakeries are just the best. Nope…don’t even try. You’ll lose this battle. Trust us.
10. Once you break the ice, the water underneath is warm
When you start dating an Austrian, it might take days, even weeks to figure out whether they are as into you as you are into them. Straightforwardness will become your new best friend and soon you’ll see that Austrians don’t really play dating games, or leave much room for interpretation when it comes to feelings. What’s there is there and once the ice is broken and the feelings are clear for everyone, sweetness and warmth will flood into your life.
11. You get the nickname of some cute nature creature like Mausi, Hasi or Spatzi
Austrians have a thing for nicknames for their lovers that are often derived from cute animals in nature. Before you know it, you’ll probably find yourself labelled with one, like Mausi (a mouse), Hasi ( a bunny), or a Spatzi ( a sparrow). Unless you get the very common Schatzi.